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Chiang Rai

Things to see and do

  • Hilltribe Museum and Population and Community Development Education Centre
    3.5 stars

    The Hill Tribe Museum is funded by famed Thai philanthropist Meechai's PDA and serves as a handy primer for anyone considering heading trekking from Chiang Rai. The museum includes a brief overview and photographic display covering some of the hill tribes you are more likely to visit. A lengthy ... read more

  • Wat Phra Kaew
    3.5 stars

    This is the most highly revered wat in Chiang Rai. Legend has it that in 1434 the stupa was struck by lightning and fell apart to reveal the Emerald Buddha. From that moment on, the statue travelled, visiting Sri Lanka, Cambodia, Ayutthaya, Lopburi, Kamphaeng Phet, Chiang Mai, Lampang and Vientiane ... read more

  • Wat Phra Singh
    3 stars

    Constructed in 1385, this wat is regarded as a fine example of Lanna-style architecture. Note the twin sets of peacocks that flank the bot entrance and the white bunnies straight out of Alice in Wonderland at the back of the compound entranceway, along with the tree which has a Buddha for each day ... read more

  • Ban Kamlar traditional steam
    3 stars

    Just a short walk from Chiang Rai's morning market, this traditional steam house is a good spot to sooth your trekked out limbs. Prices are very reasonable.

  • The Clock Tower
    4 stars

    It's gold, gaudy, brash and something of an assault on the eyes, but it really comes into its own at night. It doesn't do its tricks every evening and the timings seem a bit sporadic, but if you are passing the Clock Tower one night it may just give you a light show to remember. Every colour and ... read more

  • Hilltribe treks
    4 stars

    Treks vary in length and challenge. Itineraries vary a little, but as a general rule, a two- to three-day trek will include: a) Trekking in the mountains; b) A boat trip and an elephant safari, which means some time out on a river and a jungle trek on an elephant; c) Treks by foot into the ... read more

  • The Mae Kok River Trip
    4 stars

    At the moment the river trips are to Tha Ton, to the northwest, and in the opposite direction to the Mekong. The boats leave from the pier close to the Mae Fah Leuang Bridge at 10:30 each morning. The journey takes about three hours and costs 350 baht each way. This is one of the best ways to see ... read more

  • The White Temple
    3.5 stars

    Although influenced by Buddhist mythology, philosophy and architecture, the structure is more a work of art than functioning temple. The whole place is built with white plaster and glass and even the apparently very pure koi carp in the surrounding pool are white. The white plaster represents the ... read more

  • Chiang Rai Beach
    3.5 stars

    The 'beach' is a very pleasant park bordering the Mae Kok, River, where there are stalls selling food and sit down places to eat a snack or Thai meal. The park is all very quiet and countrified. Local people come here to relax and have a picnic, drink some Mekhong whiskey and enjoy a family day ... read more

  • Chiang Rai Night Bazaar
    3.5 stars

    Start by perusing the shopping stalls which offer similar albeit less abundant stuff as you'll find in Chiang Mai: hill-tribe wears and handicrafts, pirated DVDs, T-shirts, carved soap candles, local teas and so on. Yet the real draw of this night bazaar are its eating and entertainment ... read more

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